GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT)

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GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#1 » by GREY 1769 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 6:26 pm

This second game of a back-to-back challenges our reserves and will. Having spent a lot of it in the first game on the backs of our vets, it's time for the legs and athleticism and talent of the youth to take the lead. We're a deep team with a next man up mentality, and we'll need both to sustain our best level of play.

WHERE: Target Center, Minneapolis, MN

WHEN: Sunday, January 10, 2021, 7pm (CT)

Earn The Stripes Mode: Next man up: Mine the reserves, mind the will with a Fiesta edge tonight!

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GO SPURS GO!!!
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Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#2 » by GREY 1769 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 8:49 pm

Completely understandable. Hopefully DeMar's father makes a full recovery:
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Next man up, indeed.
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Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#3 » by GREY 1769 » Sun Jan 10, 2021 9:43 pm

Well that evens the odds better, doesn't it?
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Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#4 » by GREY 1769 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 1:01 am

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Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#5 » by GREY 1769 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 1:26 am

If we could juuuuuuuuuust protect the arc with some intensity!

Lonnie! :o Go get it, young SkyWalker!
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Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#6 » by GREY 1769 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 1:41 am

Jakob has zero confidence on O right now. Like he doesn't even want to touch the ball. And he's barely going after O rebs well just jumping up not working to box anyone out.
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Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#7 » by GREY 1769 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 2:18 am

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We're getting shots we want we just need more of them to go in.

We need to make more of their TOs.

Our O looks stifled at times, but when we're clicking we're capable of getting hot.

Staying hot is a matter of finishing with fundamentals at the rim. We must make the most of these chances, too.

Winnable game, let's get it, Spurs!
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Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#8 » by Phreak50 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 3:28 am

What an absolute meltdown.

Mills launching hail Mary's, Lyles looking like an absolute klutz out there and pretty much the whole 4th quarter and lots of the 3rd, one on one hero ball.

Why keep Lyles in the game? He is looking like one of the most useless players I've ever seen in a Spurs uniform, on both ends of the floor.

Murray is not a point guard. He can't lead a team under pressure, he doesn't create for his teammates and chooses some of the worst times to look for his own drives.

The team looked lost without Derozan driving and creating.

We really went back in time a decade and fed Aldridge in the post over and over? And against average defenders, he struggled... Why go away from what has been working the past few games?

Have to question Pop's motives sometimes.

Such a frustrating team to watch.

But in saying that, what the Wolves were doing was not basketball. And sadly it's what many teams do these days.

Screen after screen after screen and the screener basically moving (Warriors' run, Bogut style) and making it next to impossible to guard the ballhandler.

Being able to slide to the basket at will and take half decent layups or uncontested pull-ups around illegal screens is not basketball.

Then on the rare occasion the defender gets through and sticks with you, all you need to do is stop and stick your arse backwards and you get foul shots by creating contact with the chasing defender.

Steph Curry, Lillard, Trey Young, Harden, they've all ruined the game and the refs have allowed them to.
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Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#9 » by GREY 1769 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 3:39 am

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Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#10 » by Jedzz » Mon Jan 11, 2021 4:11 am

Spurs would have won with Derozan.
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Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#11 » by imagump1313 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 5:01 am

If I thought we were a playoff team I would be pissed we lost that game. But its a learning experience. People are learning their roles. We didn't take a good shot the last 8 minutes of that game.
Once again when we fall into ISO ball offense we never get a good shot. DeRozan was missed, sure. But people need to learn to score when the game gets tight or we aren't making progress. We need to learn to get stops too but Minnesota misses enough shots to not need that soo much tonight.
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Re: GAME DAY, BALA! GAME 10: SPURS AT WOLVES, 10-1-2021, 7PM (CT) 

Post#12 » by GREY 1769 » Mon Jan 11, 2021 7:00 am

A winnable game, but ultimately our missed chances accumulated to an insurmountable point. And whereas our shot and team play returned just in time the last game, they all but abandoned us in this one.

We came back from an early deficit to get a small lead but even then there was a harbinger of the kind of night it would turn out to be:
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This was early in the 2nd Q.

And that lead once again kept fluctuating throughout the game until early in the 4th Q when we outscored them 8-2 in the first 2:12 for a 77-68 lead, our biggest of the game, and then... holy moly what a sludge fest! We just couldn't bloody score for over three minutes, going 0-5. They couldn't score either and it was a rather forgettable, turnover-filled affair, but if you give an opponent enough chances eventually the law of averages takes effect and sure enough they started making shots and went on a 11-0 run for a 79-77 lead. It felt as if our D got affected by our O to some extent, and even though we started scoring a bit once they got the lead, we could never catch up despite multiple attempts to do so. We scored only 11 points in just under the last six minutes of the game. Just brutal.

Patty took 13 3s! But he only made three. For a player averaging 57%, he came down to earth rather hard. But he was 7-19 overall, so he was really active and kept pushing. Despite the inefficiency, you can't fault the effort.

Patty scored 18 off the bench, but the other three players combined for 6 points (4 by Rudy and 2 by Jakob, none by Devin again). Rudy rebounded well (7), Patty assisted well (4). Jakob is snake bitten. He doesn't want anything to do with the ball on O though we keep going to him to make sure he's not left out. He has butter fingers, he lets go of the ball as soon as he gets it - I didn't say shoot it, as it's not really what he's doing. Later when he missed both FTs he was visibly frustrated, turning his back on the basket, going over his stroke with his arm, and then... missing again. I think it's getting to him and it is starting to affect his game on D, more specifically on the boards: he doesn't look to box out, he isn't really jumping up for them, he sort of taps the ball around and today they corralled him using rebounding-by-committee with their C out.

We should have had the advantage tonight, but even though each team got 9 O boards, they outrebounded us 52-45 overall. We had several chances on the O boards, but we either couldn't secure the ball in our hands or we punched it out and lost possession of it. We missed several putbacks at the rim, too, so there were several chances left there, too.

Whereas either our bench or our starters have it going on any given night, in this game we tried generating energy but you could see in all the rushed and missed shots we were running on fumes, and when we tried to make plays in the 4th Q we just couldn't put it together.

DeMar went home to be with his ill father and missing him and Derrick - our two best shot creators - on a back-to-back made for a laborious O. Several scoring droughts attest to our need of more of them, but it's also important not to overreact. We got 13 more shots than our opponent did, and 30 of them were from the arc. We settled for outside shots a bit too often at times (again an indication of fatigue), but we frankly just missed a boat load of the ones we usually make.

Lonnie stepped up and was our early go-to scorer. Time and again he found spaces to drive through and finish at the rim. He was 9-14, 2-4 from 3 and 4-6FTs for 22 first half points. Once he found he could get to the rim at will it was almost like that switch flipped and he tried to finish with more flair and left a lot of unscored points. The other part of it is that he's SO athletic that his speed may actually work against him as he can't finish when he's going that fast. But he gave us the scoring juice we needed and we turned a 3-point 1st Q deficit into a 5-point first half lead.

That was about as much gas as we had left. We were outscored 52-39 in the second half, including the lowest scoring 19-point 4th Q. Lonnie's shot taking and accuracy slowed down significantly in the second half, going 1-5. Keldon was only 1-6 for the game, too low in both accuracy and number of shots taken, DJ struggled in a 5-15 night missing many at the rim, and with Trey (welcome back!) connecting on 2-4, we went to another tried and true scorer in LMA. Pop really wanted this one and tried one method of scoring after another - driving, didn't work; 3s, didn't work; mid-range Js, didn't work; so he went to the left block for LMA's patented post-ups. It worked somewhat - LMA was 3-5 just outside the paint and 2-2 in the non-restricted paint, but despite his 20 points (9-21, 1-3 from 3, 1-1FTs, 9 boards, 4 assists, and 1 steal) it too didn't turn out to be the saving grace. We simply didn't get enough production from the rest of the team.

We only had 21 assists, and only got to the FT line 14 times, connecting on a woeful 8 for 57.1%. By comparison, DeMar was 12-13FTs yesterday. Part of it was not getting some calls, but that happens in every game. The low number of attempts and the poor number of made ones is another indicator or physical fatigue and the mental toll this trip is taking. We couldn't get over both.

We defended well enough, collapsing in the paint to get deflections and steals, but that we only had four fast break points attests to not so much out transition game - again, we got enough fast break chances - but to our inability to score. Trey led us in rebounding with 10 (3 on O), and chipped in 5 points and 2 assists. He can spread the floor because he has the range from 3. Jakob only played 11 minutes and it's probably best he use a break. Devin knocked knees with someone so we couldn't use him out there as much as we'd have liked, and Lonnie left the floor after a huge block. We had to take a timeout because he couldn't run down the court. Turns out it was only cramps, thank God.

It just felt like we couldn't get over that mental hump, and when you don't score, miscues in defensive details add up. We fouled a 3-shooter which is a cardinal sin, especially in a close game where momentum shifts can turn on a single play. Keldon fouled their PG from behind - one of those weird fouls where the PG gets ahead of his defender and then dribbles in the paint to create space often stopping so the defender behind him runs into him and that's what KJ got caught for. Pop called a timeout and gave Keldon an earful. Keldon tried to plead his case but Pop wasn't having any of it. You could tell that that Keldon was still smarting from the tongue lashing when he came back out on the court. Lonnie tried an out of timeout drive that he finished with flair and a miss, and Pop had to console him on the sideline. So we had Jakob, Keldon, Lonnie, DJ, and LMA clearly frustrated either from misses or from not getting the calls we thought we ought to have gotten. Welcome to DeMar's world.

Lonnie said he tried to take it upon himself to take charge more, though I found this quote to be curious:
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I don't want to make too much of it, but previously he's always spoken about playing the right way, doing what's best for the team. So for him to suggest that he's passing because he's trying to be the nice guy is a bit out of left field. We don't need him to be nice, we need to make the right plays whether it's passing or scoring. Playing this way hasn't stopped Keldon from being assertive with the ball, so it's really more on Lonnie to find ways to score. Sure there are fewer chances with DeMar out there, but once Derrick returns and Lonnie returns to the bench he'll get more chances against different opponents.

You could make an argument that our opponent was on a back-to-back, too, but we're also in the midst of a west-east, five-game road trip, and without Drew, Becky and another staffer who are out for Covid protocols, we're suddenly missing some people who provide important support to the team in their respective ways. This is after losing Derrick after one game, and suddenly losing DeMar for at least this game; it's a lot of change to adjust to in a short time.

You could see how much DeMar means to our O and how much we don't really have end-of-game scorers who could get their own points in quite the way DeMar does. He's underappreciated until he's not there and we have to figure out how to better compensate for his absence. We haven't really had the experience of playing without him, much less so without any preparation on the second game of a back-to-back.

Let's rest up, regroup, and come together. Fatigue and sudden change can be agents of friction and fragmentation one play to one game to another at a time. We need to be honest about what we need to work on but also stay supportive of and for one another. How we respond to this game is the next step in our progress.

Pop's post-game hasn't lost a step:
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